Weekend Movies: Marvel will make a mint, “Captain America” owns May

capThe reviews of “Captain America: Civil War,” have been overwhelmingly positive. Many are raves.

Just like the reviews of “Barbershop: The Next Cut,” or “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

I’ve been in that tiny minority, on all three occasions, shouting “Wait, this isn’t all that” or “this is crap” into the infinite void.

But at least I haven’t been alone. Movies have changed, Marvel has moved into mass production, a comic-book assembly line stretching out into the foreseeable future.

And the disappearance of so many legacy media critics has tilted reviewing in a new direction. Let’s call it, “Lie back and think of England.” Because that’s what it feels like, a lot of people sort of rolling over for this or that sure-to-be-blockbuster (“Barbershop” had many media entities sending their C-reviewers, which still doesn’t explain why Johnny and Jane have no taste. Or guts.).

Doesn’t matter that given just a tiny bit of time, fans and critics stop huffing whatever it is they’re inhaling and REALIZE what a more diverse cast but still inferior carbon copy of “Star Wars: A New Hope” “The Force Awakens” actually is.

Because it takes a certain nerve to endure the abuse you know you’re going to get from fanboys (it’s always the boys who’re the ugliest) when you pan a movie that’s set to become a temporary “phenomenon.”

Overwhelmingly positive reviews for “Captain America: Civil War,” which doesn’t deserve to be in the same conversation as “Captain America: The First Avenger,” or “Deadpool.” Not that the fanboys want to hear that. It’s not cinematic, the action is repetitive obviously sped-up to make movie stars look like superhuman superfighters and the script, not even bothering to ID this villain or that hottie in the short skirt and knee-highs, is strictly needs-based, as in “We need to invent a reason for these guys to fight. Doesn’t matter if anybody buys into it. It just needs to happen.”

Cynical. Marvel is watering down its brand while the brand is still platinum. 

Everybody in the Marvel universe (not even close) shows up in this one. But mention Ant Man, and some nerd from Puerto Rico is cussing you out for “spoilers.” Dude, it’s in the art the studio provided for the movie. See above.

Shakespeare brought back a crowd favorite, Falstaff, to make his “Merry Wives of Windsor” a surefire hit. More recently, Hollywood TV producers and film moguls have encouraged crossover mashups to draw a crowd. It’s an idea they borrowed from the comics of the ’60s.

Special editions, or “Let’s make a boatload of money off our fans by giving them the team-ups they wanted” invaded the DC and Marvel titles, seemingly when they’d run out of other ideas and villains worth fighting.

So it is with the Avengers movies, and “Batman v. Superman.” They’re stealing some of the X-Men thunder, in the process. But at least those came to big screen life in that form — the more “mutants/enhanced beings” the better. More and more tickets sold, enthusiasm only grows.

I sat in the theater Tuesday, knowing that overseas reviewers and a few domestic fanboy critics had creamed their jeans over it. And up until the Battle Royale, I was scribbling in my notepad, “They’re all worked up over THIS?”

Just bandwagoning, I figured.

“Civil War” has already opened huge, overseas. That “America” brand has value everywhere, even among the Godless communists and third of the world that hates us. Go figure.

The Box Office Guru figures Marvel and its Disney overlords will pocket $185 million by midnight Sunday. That might be low.

Nothing else of note is opening wide, nothing else in theaters is going to make a dime.

And then the younger X-Men show up.

Let the summer comic book takeover begin.




About Roger Moore

Movie Critic, formerly with McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orlando Sentinel, published in Spin Magazine, The World and now published here, Orlando Magazine, Autoweek Magazine
This entry was posted in Reviews, previews, profiles and movie news. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Weekend Movies: Marvel will make a mint, “Captain America” owns May

  1. D. Octy says:

    While I agree with you on most of the reviews (I was really happy that I wasn’t the only one who found SW:TFA utter crap) and I check this website frequently to decide what to watch and what to skip, I don’t agree with you on this one.

    Despite having never read any comic books, I’ve watched all Marvel / DC superhero movies and TV series, but only a couple have stuck with me: the first Iron Man movie and Guardians of the Galaxy. I’ve found all others lacking and boring and forgot about them 5 minutes after walking out the theatre. I ended up going by myself at the kids matinee screenings just to tick the box, knowing I’d see a crappy movie before walking in. I was never wrong!

    I was ultimately very disappointed with Whedon’s writing for the big screen (either Serenity was a fluke, or JW just isn’t suited for super hero movies), both Avengers movies were sh!t, Age of Ultron even more than the first one; endless, boring CGI fighting, I almost fell asleep at AoU.

    I thought the first Captain America movie was laughably bad, but found the second one to be a real improvement over “The First Avenger”. And now, having watched Civil War last night and having had some time to digest it, I think it’s one of the best Marvel superhero movies out there.

    It’s not going to win any awards at Cannes, but as far as (Marvel) superhero movies, go, it’s easily the best one they’ve released – IMHO! 😉 Yes, the biggest “snoozefest” was the movie’s core fight, the big one, where I popped my phone and started looking stuff on IMDB throwing an eye at the screen to check if they were done. Aside from that, I found the movie to be enjoyable and was blown away by the camera technique they used for filming the hand-to-hand combat scenes in “Wakanda”.

    Now, I realise that this comment is not going to sway anybody, and, looking back, I don’t even know why I wrote it or why anyone should care about it, I just think you were a bit too harsh on this movie that I liked and you are not entitled to your opinion! /s 🙂 Not that you couldn’t tell, but English is not my native language and I did my best trying to be coherent so don’t judge me on that.

    PS: What do you think of the upcoming movie, Rogue One?

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